Undergraduate Catalog

2012 – 2013

2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Archive

Office of Admissions
Emil H. Messikomer Hall
100 W. Rosedale Avenue
West Chester, PA 19383
Phone: 610-436-3411
Fax: 610-436-2907

Revised May 2012

Academic Programs

Department of Chemistry

(See also Pre-Medical Program)

119 Schmucker Science South
Blaise Frost, Chairperson
Melissa Cichowicz, Assistant Chairperson

PROFESSORS: Goodson, Moran, Townsend

ASSOCIATE PROFESSORS: Azam, Barth, Cichowicz, Frost, Kolasinski, Ressner, Starn, K. Usher


The Department of Chemistry has been approved by the American Chemical Society's Committee on Professional Training since 1972. Graduates of the B.S. in chemistry program and the B.S. in biochemistry program receive certification. The Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC) has awarded full accreditation to the bachelor of science degree in forensic and toxicological chemistry program.

The Department of Chemistry offers five undergraduate degree programs:

  1. The B.S. in CHEMISTRY program (approved by the American Chemical Society [ACS]) provides a rigorous scientific foundation in all major areas of chemistry. This degree prepares the graduate for a career in a wide variety of chemically related areas including the chemical, petroleum, environmental, and pharmaceutical sectors. In addition, it serves as a basis for graduate and professional study leading to higher level industrial positions, teaching at the college level, or involvement in technical aspects of related fields such as law.
  2. The B.S. in BIOCHEMISTRY program (approved by the American Chemical Society [ACS]) provides a comprehensive background in the major areas of chemistry with an emphasis in biochemistry. Students awarded this degree will be qualified for employment opportunities in chemistry and biochemistry. The program also prepares students for graduate study in chemistry and in biochemistry. This program has been placed in moratorium and is no longer accepting new students.
  3. The B.S. in CHEMISTRY-BIOLOGY (Pre-Medical) provides the core courses required for admission to schools of medicine, dentistry, and veterinary medicine as well as schools of optometry, podiatry, chiropractic, and physical therapy. It also enables the student to pursue a career in biochemistry and molecular biology.
  4. The B.S. in FORENSIC AND TOXICOLOGICAL CHEMISTRY program prepares students for careers in crimalistics and toxicology. The program also serves as a basis for graduate study and specialization in these fields. A one-semester internship in a toxicology or forensic-chemistry laboratory is mandatory.
  5. The B.S. in EDUCATION in CHEMISTRY program prepares students for a career in teaching chemistry in secondary schools. The program gives students experience in the major branches of chemistry so that, with proper selection of electives, graduate work in either pure chemistry or chemistry education can be pursued. Sufficient flexibility is provided so that students also may become certified in general science. This program requires 126 credits for completion. This program requires 124 credits for completion. See the “Teacher Certification Programs” section of this catalog for an explanation of related requirements.

Majors in the five B.S. programs should consult the Department of Chemistry handbook and their adviser for current requirements, particularly regarding internships. A grade of C- or better is necessary in all required science and math courses.

Undergraduate Research and Internship Programs

Although internships are not a mandatory part of all chemistry programs, they are available to majors on a selective basis. Students receive varying amounts of credit based on the number of hours spent in a work situation and on the nature of the academic work during the internship or research. Credit varies from one to 12 semester hours. The number of research or internship credits taken may be limited by the department.


126 semester hours for all degrees except the B.S.Ed., which is 126 semester hours

  1. General ed. requirements, see pages 38-44 (48 semester hours)
    Note: Certain programs have individualized requirements; see below.
  2. Chemistry requirements (27 semester hours)
    CHE 103-104, 231-232, 321, 418, 476, 491
    CRL 103-104, 231, 321
    Lab safety exam must be passed before application for graduation. See adviser for more information.
  3. Other science requirements (11 semester hours)
    PHY 170-180; BIO 110 (B.S. chemistry majors may substitute CSC 141.)
    PHY 170 and BIO 110 (or CSC 141) fulfill science general education requirements.
  4. Mathematics requirements (8 semester hours)
    MAT 161-162 (MAT 161 fulfills a general education math requirement.)
    B.S. chemistry-biology majors substitute MAT 121 for MAT 162.
*This program has been placed in moratorium and is no longer accepting new students.


  1. Required chemistry courses (26 semester hours)
    CHE 341, 342, 409, 411, 424
    CRL 232, 341, 342, 411, and 424
  2. Chemistry electives (9 semester hours)
    Group A electives: CHE 333 or CHE 477 (3 semester hours)
    Group B electives: selected from upper-division chemistry courses (6 semester hours)


  1. Required chemistry courses (28 semester hours)
    CHE 341, 342, 411, 424, 477
    CRL 232, 341, 342, 411, 424, and 476
  2. Other required courses (3 semester hours)
    One of these courses: BIO 214, 220, or 230
  3. Biochemistry elective (4 semester hours)
    Students must select from among the following:
    CHE 381, 479, 480, or CRL 477

*This program has been placed in moratorium and is no longer accepting new students.


  1. Required chemistry courses (20 semester hours)
    CHE 341, 371, 451, 479
    CRL 341, 371, 476
  2. Other required courses (15 semester hours)
    BIO 204, 230; BIL 333; CRJ 110; and MAT 121 (CRJ 210 may be substituted for CRJ 110.)


  1. General ed. requirements, see pages 38-44 (48 semester hours)
    Note: Students in this program must take a LIT course and PHI 180 as humanities general education courses, and PSY 100 is recommended as a behavioral/social science general education course.
  2. Required chemistry courses (12 semester hours)
    CHE 341, 411, 417, and CRL 232 and 341
  3. Required education courses (35 semester hours)
    EDA 103; 303, EDR 347, EDF 300; EDP 250; EDS 306, 411, 412; and SCE 350 or SCB 350; LAN/ENG 382
    Note: SCE 350 and LAN/ENG 382 fulfill the diverse communities requirement, and EDF 300 fulfills the interdisciplinary requirement.


  1. General ed. requirements, see pages 38-44 (48 semester hours)
    Note: Students in the chemistry-biology curriculum must take PHI 371 as a humanities or interdisciplinary general education requirement.
  2. Required chemistry courses (32 semester hours)
    CHE 103, 104, 231, 232, 321, 341, 418**, 476, 491
    CRL 103, 104, 231, 321**, and 476
  3. Required biology courses (24 semester hours)
    BIO 110, 217, 220, 230, 357, 448, and 468 or 469
  4. Required courses (8 semester hours)
    PHY 130-140 or 170-180
  5. Required mathematics courses (7 semester hours)
    MAT 121 and 161
  6. Concentration electives** (9-10 semester hours)
    Selected from upper-division chemistry and biology courses

** Students may, with the permission of the department chair and the coordinator of the pre-medical program, substitute an approved 6-12 credit internship for selected requirements and concentration electives. The courses with double asterisks would be replaced by the internship (12 credits).

Minor in Chemistry (17 semester hours)

The Department of Chemistry offers a minor in chemistry. The requirements are as follows:

  1. Required courses: Completion of CHE 231, CHE 232, CRL 231, CHE 321, CRL 321, and three credits of 300-level or higher chemistry elective(s). These electives must be chemistry courses (CHE) that satisfy the chemistry requirements of the ACS chemistry major program. Each of these courses must be passed with a grade of C- or better.
  2. Completion of the prerequisites for these courses including CHE 103, CHE 104, CRL 103, CRL 104. Each of these courses must be passed with a grade of C- or better.
  3. GPA of at least a 2.00 in the minor.
  4. Interview with the Department of Chemistry minor adviser or chair at least once a semester.


Symbols: CHE, CRL

100 Concepts of Chemistry (3) A broad survey course with a laboratory experience that seeks to develop an understanding of the field of chemistry through inquiry. Basic competence in scientific methods and procedures will be obtained by observing chemical reactions and studying the chemical and physical properties of a variety of compounds. (2 hours lecture, 2 hours lab)

101 Fundamentals of Chemistry (3) A mathematically oriented course for students who intend later to take CHE 103 but whose science and mathematics backgrounds are judged by a pretest to need remediation.

103-104 General Chemistry I-II (3) (3) Basic laws and theories of chemistry, including atomic structure, chemical bonding, oxidation-reduction, solutions, and ionic equilibria. Correlations of chemical principles and their application to modern descriptive chemistry. CHE 103 must precede CHE 104. PREREQ (for CHE 103): Successful completion of high school chemistry OR passing grade in CHE 101.

CRL 103-104 Experimental General Chemistry I-II (1) (1) Basic laboratory studies in college chemistry utilizing the quantitative approach. Semimicro qualitative analysis and inorganic preparations. COREQ or PREREQ: CHE 103-104. CRL 103 must precede CRL 104.

107 General Chemistry for the Allied Health Sciences (4) A one-semester treatment of the fundamentals of chemistry, including atomic structure and bonding, types of reactions, kinetics, equilibrium, and thermodynamics. May not be taken as a chemistry major elective. CRL 107 may be taken concurrently or after CHE 107.

CRL 107 General Chemistry Lab for Allied Health Science (1) A one-semester laboratory course to complement CHE 107. Basic laboratory techniques, both qualitative and quantitative, will be used to illustrate principles from the lecture. COREQ or PREREQ: CHE 107.

160  The Chemistry of Beer (3) An introduction to the chemistry of beer, including its properties, ingredients, production, and origins. The chemistry and biochemistry of alcohol will also be covered.

230 Introduction to Organic and Biological Chemistry (3) A course in the fundamentals of organic chemistry. Structural theory of organic molecules, organic synthesis, and biological applications. PREREQ: C- or better in CHE 104 or 107.

231-232 Organic Chemistry I-II (4) (3) A survey of the classes of organic reactions from a mechanistic deductive approach. Preparatory topics will include atomic structure, bonding theories, resonance, and acid-base concepts. CHE 231 will focus on classes of organic molecules, organic nomenclature, stereochemistry, nucleophilic substitution, and elimination reactions applied to the chemistry of hydrocarbons, alkyl halides, alcohols, and simple systems. CHE 232 will include reactions of carbonyl compounds, the chemistry of aromatic compounds, molecular rearrangements, oxidation and reduction reactions, carbanion and amine chemistry, and spectroscopy. PREREQ (for CHE 231): CHE 104. PREREQ (for CHE 232): CHE 231.

CRL 231-232 Experimental Organic Chemistry I-II (2) (2) Basic laboratory skills in organic chemistry including classical as well as instrumental techniques. Organic synthesis and modern spectrophotometric methods of identification. COREQ or PREREQ: CRL 104 and CHE 231. CRL 231 must precede CRL 232.

300 Fundamentals of Radioisotope Techniques (3) (Also PHY 340) Biological, chemical, environmental, and physical effects of nuclear radiation. Radiation detection instrumentation and radio tracer methodology. (2 hours lecture, 2 hours lab) PREREQ: CHE 104 and PHY 140 or 180.

310 Introductory Biochemistry (3) The chemical nature of biological phenomena is presented. Particular emphasis is placed on the metabolic pathways and the enzymes responsible for these processes with applications to nutrition. PREREQ: CHE 230 or 231. (Not for chemistry majors or minors.)

321 Analytical Chemistry I (3) Fundamental principles of analytical chemistry. Theory of gravimetric and volumetric methods of analysis. PREREQ: CHE 104.

CRL 321 Experimental Analytical Chemistry I (2) Practical experience in modern techniques of chemical analysis with emphasis on volumetric and gravimetric methods. COREQ or PREREQ: CHE 321.

333 Organic Chemistry III (3) An advanced mechanistic study of organic compounds, functional groups, and their reaction. Spectroscopic characterization of organic molecules will also be covered. PREREQ: C- or better in CHE 232.

341 Physical Chemistry I (4) An introduction to physical chemistry including ideal gases, kinetic theory, three laws of thermodynamics, introduction to phase equilibrium, chemical equilibrium, application of the fundamental equation of thermodynamics, transport phenomena, chemical kinetics, introductory spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, and the structure of solids. PREREQ: CHE 104, MAT 161 and 162 all with a C- or better. COREQ or PREREQ: PHY 180.

CRL 341 Experimental Physical Chemistry I (2) Laboratory course in physical chemistry including computer applications, thermodynamics, chemical kinetics, structure, and spectroscopy. COREQ: CHE 103 or 105, CHE 104 or 106, CHE 341, MAT 161 and 162, and PHY 170 and 180.

342 Physical Chemistry II (3) Advanced thermodynamics including nonideal gases, nonideal systems, and thermodynamics at surfaces; introduction to statistical mechanics; quantum chemistry; advanced chemical kinetics, including kinetics near equilibrium, catalytic kinetics, and activated complex theory; and dynamic electrochemistry. PREREQ: CHE 341 and PHY 180, both with a C- or better.

CRL 342 Experimental Physical Chemistry II (2) Experiments and projects in advanced physical chemistry. PREREQ: CHE/CRL 341. COREQ: CHE 342.

371 Forensic Chemistry (3) Introduction to criminalistics (chemical, forensic, analytical techniques) with the role, functions, operations, and organization of a scientific police laboratory. PREREQ: CHE 232 and CHE 321.

CRL 371 Forensic Chemistry Lab (2) Principles of microscopy, screening methods, and instrumental methods of chemical analysis applied to criminalistics and toxicological samples. COREQ or PREREQ: CHE 371.

381 Clinical Chemistry (3) Analysis of biological fluids. Clinical significance of enzyme, electrolyte, protein, and carbohydrate analysis. Requires permission of instructor or preparation in organic chemistry and quantitative analysis. COREQ or PREREQ: CHE 321 and CHE 476.

403 Chemistry of the Environment (3) The chemistry of the atmosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere; human impact on these areas. PREREQ: CHE 104. May also be offered with lab. (2 hours lecture, 2 hours lab)

409 Descriptive Inorganic Chemistry (3) Emphasis is on the periodic properties of the representative elements, the structure of inorganic solids, the chemistry of aqueous and nonaqueous solutions, and the study of some transition metals. Lanthanides and actinides also are studied. PREREQ: CHE/CRL 104.

410 Advanced Independent Study or Chemical Research (2-6) Taken under the direct supervision of a faculty member. May be taken for two semesters for a total of six credits. PREREQ: Senior standing or permission of department chairperson.
This course may be taken again for credit.

411 Advanced Inorganic Chemistry (3) Structure and properties of the elements and inorganic compounds from a theoretical point of view. Atomic structure and the periodic law; molecular structure and bonding, including symmetry and MO theory; structure, bonding, and reactions of transition element compounds and main group compounds; acid-base chemistry. PREREQ: CHE 341. COREQ: CHE 342.

CRL 411 Inorganic Syntheses (2) A four-hour laboratory course in the synthesis and characterization of inorganic compounds of the main group and the transition elements. PREREQ or COREQ: CHE 409 or 411.

417 History of Chemistry (1) The history of chemistry and its predecessors from earliest times to the present day. PREREQ: CHE 104.

418 Chemical Information (1) Instruction in the use of a modern chemical library, reference and data acquisition, synthetic procedures, and computer data bases. PREREQ: CHE 231.

424 Advanced Analytical Chemistry (3) Basic principles of applied instrumental analysis. Special emphasis on the use of spectrophotometric and electroanalytical instrumentation. PREREQ: CHE 321 and 341. COREQ: CHE 342.

CRL 424 Advanced Analytical Chemistry Laboratory (2) Practical experience in the choice and application of instrumental methods of analysis to chemical systems. COREQ or PREREQ: CHE 424. This course may be taken again for credit.

433 Advanced Topics in Chemistry (3) A topic of current interest in chemistry. Topic to be announced before registration. PREREQ: CHE 341. This course may be taken again for credit.

436 Polymer Chemistry (3) Polymerization kinetics, rheology of polymer melts, crystallization parameters, and monomer reactivity in copolymerization. PREREQ: CHE 232.

CRL 436 Polymer Chemistry Laboratory (2) Synthesis of polymers; molecular, physical, and thermal characterization of polymers. Instrumental methods include X-rays, IR, electron microscopy, and thermal analysis. COREQ: CHE 436.

450 Internship in Chemistry (1-12) A full- or part-time work-study appointment in a clinical, commercial, governmental, or industrial laboratory supervised jointly by an on-site supervisor and Department of Chemistry faculty member. PREREQ: GPA of 2.00 or above and permission of the Chemistry Internship Committee (CIC).
This course may be taken again for credit.

451 Internship in Forensic Chemistry (1-12) A full- or part-time work-study appointment in a clinical, commercial, governmental, or industrial laboratory supervised jointly by an on-site supervisor and a Department of Chemistry faculty member. The analytical methodology in the laboratory will include techniques applicable to forensic toxicology and/or criminalistics samples. PREREQ: Permission of the Forensic Chemistry Internship Committee.

452 Internship in Chemistry-Biology (6-12) This course gives the student exposure to and hands-on experience in the field of biomedical research. Intended to be a full-time appointment in a hospital, medical school, or research institute, it may be modified to be part-time to better meet a student's needs. Supervised jointly by an on-site supervisor and a Department of Chemistry faculty member. The analytical methodology in the laboratory will include techniques applicable to biomedical research. PREREQ: Permission of the Chemistry-Biology Internship Committee.

460 Advanced Organic Spectroscopy (3) An advanced course in organic spectroscopy dealing with IR, NMR, and MS techniques. Other techniques also may be covered. PREREQ: CHE 232 with a C- or better. COREQ: CHE 341.

476 Biochemistry I (3) This course examines the physical and chemical characteristics of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids. The bioenergetics of carbohydrate and fat metabolism and the enzymatic control of these processes is a focal point. The role of nucleic acids in protein synthesis is also covered. PREREQ: CHE 232.

CRL 476 Experimental Biochemistry I (2) Laboratory exercises in the fundamentals of biochemistry. COREQ or PREREQ: CHE 476.

477 Biochemistry II (3) This course is an extension of CHE 476 and considers the biosynthesis and degradation of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids. The primary focus is on the interrelationship of these molecules and the pathways involving their metabolism. PREREQ: CHE 476, or permission of instructor.

CRL 477 Experimental Biochemistry II (2) A second-semester laboratory course in biochemistry that stresses the use of advanced analytical instruments to characterize biologically important molecules and to elucidate their mechanism of action. PREREQ: CHE 476 and CRL 476.

479 Chemical Toxicology (3) A one-semester course in the environmental and physiological aspects of chemical toxicity. Special emphasis will be placed on documentation, sampling, and verification of materials. PREREQ: CHE 232.

480 Introduction to Chemical Research (2-6) An independent chemical research project under the direction of a faculty member. The faculty member assigns the research topic and background literature readings and works closely with the student in the research laboratory giving instruction in laboratory techniques. The student is required to write a final research report. PREREQ: Senior standing or permission of department chairperson.
This course may be taken again for credit.

491 Seminar in Chemistry (1) Oral presentation of papers based on laboratory or library research. PREREQ: Permission of department chairperson.

SCI 102 Electricity With Physical and Biological Applications (3) An exploration of the physics of electrical circuits, the chemical basis of electricity as the flow of electrons, acid-base and oxidation-reduction reactions in chemical and in living systems, the electrical activity in the human nervous system, and connections between electricity and sensation and locomotion in humans. For elementary education majors only. Team taught with the departments of Biology and Physics.